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In this collect Duffy shows no sympathy for men. How far do you agree with this assessment of the 'World's Wife'?

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"In this collection, Duffy shows no sympathy for men" How far do you agree of this assessment of "The World's Wife"? Due to the fact that Carol Ann Duffy to a certain extent is a feminine writer, it is easy to make the proclamation that she fundamentally undermines male status in 'The World's Wife'. Duffy uses the collection to give women who have not been heard previously a voice, and by using this sense of 'L'ecriture feminine' Duffy does wholeheartedly have to conform against the phallocentric world many women have found themselves living in now and in the past. With the poem 'Mrs Tiresias', Duffy strongly explores ideas on the basis of masculinity and femininity, and the male persona in this poem is vastly ridiculed. In the poem, Duffy uses many humorous ideas to highlight how she sees women to be the stronger sex and as a result men are shown not to be able to fill the boots of women. Duffy is able to do this by taking a classical Greek myth, the story of the prophet Tiresias who wounded a female snake after seeing her mating with another snake and as a result he was turned into a woman, and satirizing any masculine ideology that women lead easy lives. ...read more.


This bodily function which is constricted entirely to women allows Duffy reinforce the idea of feminity, and hence exclude any sense of masculinity having a higher status. Tiresias's experience as a woman is presented in the poem as external only, which allows Duffy to show that men will never be able to think or feel like a woman. This idea is shown in the poem with "telling the women out there...he knew how we felt" which shows how his appearance may be feminine but his understanding is still male. The fact Tiresias is presented by Duffy at the beginning of the poem as a typical man with "out the back gate with his stick, the dog;" and to be doing typically male things such as "whistling" is representative of the fact that men are in retrospect all the same, and therefore Duffy is showing no sympathy for the individual male. Due to the fact that the reader feels no sympathy for Tiresias because he has lost all sense of masculinity, and even though this is a shocking situation, the fact that Duffy presents Tiresias to be taking advantage of this female appearance to become a celebrity, Duffy is able to present ...read more.


The fact that the male character reduces Queen Kong to numerous emotions, Duffy is able to illustrate how men do not deserve sympathy because of the amount of pain they cause for women. This idea is portrayed in the poem with the fact that Queen Kong goes hunting for her man "pressing" her "Passionate eye to a thousand windows" this shows the extent to what women are drove to by men. Furthermore, with the use of "He liked me to gently blow on him" Duffy is able to present ideas on the subversion of women for men, tending to their every need. This shows how Duffy could feel that men do not deserve sympathy in her collection as they lead perfectly satisfactory lives. To conclude the point whether 'The World's Wife' shows no sympathy for men , it is undeniable that many poems in the collection portray men in negative lights; often through both their personality and looks. Duffy wrote 'the World's Wife' in order to give women who have been metaphorically silent in both history and stories a voice; and by doing so she had to undermine the status of the male characters in order to elevate women. ?? ?? ?? ?? Amy Moore ...read more.

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**** 4 STARS

This is a good essay which clearly shows an understanding and knowledge of poems. There is some detailed and perceptive analysis of poems and the writer remains focused on the question throughout and makes good use of of topic sentences at the
beginning of paragraphs.

Marked by teacher Katie Dixon 05/09/2013

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